Archive for the 'Religion' Category



A Call To Globalization

BY Herschel Smith
3 days, 19 hours ago

The Small Wars Journal.

Fundamentally, it’s not complicated. Unless we should finally take certain tangible steps to implement a genuinely organic and cooperative planetary civilization – one based on the primary truth of human “oneness” – there will be no civilization at all. To credibly reject this sober conclusion would require reasonable expectations of an already-ongoing evolution toward worldwide peace and denuclearization.

[ … ]

Antecedent questions should now be brought to the fore. Why have we made ourselves existentially vulnerable? The only genuinely compelling and lucid answer should reflect a continuously undiminished willingness to seek personal identity in membership. Significantly, though rarely if ever mentioned, we humans fear solitude or “aloneness” more than absolutely anything else on earth, sometimes even more than death. Accordingly, amid a growing chaos that is already stampeding across whole continents, we humans willingly abide a fully primal loyalty to membership claims of  “tribe.”

Always, everywhere, individuals desperate “to belong” will enthusiastically subordinate themselves to the most utterly far-reaching expectations of nation, class or faith.

[ … ]

In the end, such twisted dedication lies at the very heart of war, terrorism and genocide.

[ … ]

There absolutely must be a firmer and more willing embrace of global interdependence and human “oneness.”

[ … ]

Like it or not, the American “bee” – together with all others – must learn to live cooperatively, within the “hive.” To ritualistically suggest otherwise, as does US President Donald Trump, would be nothing less than to willfully surrender all residual human advantages of intellect, analysis and reason. Following any such still-preventable surrender, America and all other state members of our integrated global system will have done nothing less than reinvigorate the dissembling forces of an uncontrollable “tribal” chaos.

So, jettison your nation, tribe and faith, embrace “oneness,” prepare for globalization, and denuclearize.

So says this writer at SWJ.

This is a remarkable missive.  Obama also called for a world without nuclear weapons, and made a promise to that effect.  Trust everyone else to denuclearize, and lead the way, they say, advocating relinquishing the most significant contribution to world peace history has ever known.

Globalization is the only solution to tribe, nation and faith.  Because those are problems, you see.  We are all one with our brothers everywhere.

Sounds like the words of Jesus, yes?  Or not so much.  These are only the words of a fake Jesus that didn’t really exist.  The real Jesus said of His enemies that “You are of your father the devil,” who was a liar from the beginning (John 8:44).  Apparently God doesn’t believe everyone is “one” with everyone else.

Jettison faith and embrace globalization.  These are not the words of Jesus.  George Soros may like the message, but then George Soros admitted to helping the Nazis.

The Second Amendment Isn’t The Second Commandment

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 1 week ago

A pastor named James Pence.

As a nation we have seemed to somehow elevated the Second Amendment to the status of one of the Ten Commandments as if God positively said, “Thou shalt bear arms.” Of course the irony is there is the commandment that forbids murder, and nowhere in Holy Scriptures do we see the necessity of having weapons.

[ … ]

The times call for bold action once again in the face of the national epidemic of gun violence by restricting a class of weapons to only the military and our law enforcement personnel. I’m tired of seeing “Thou shalt not kill” being violated in mass killings, but, most of all, I’m tired of lowering the flag to half staff every two weeks when it could be flying high and proud.

You can read the rest for yourself.  The problems with this commentary are manifold and too numerous to address in full, but we’ll make a few observations.

As I’ve pointed out before, when Jesus commanded His disciples to go find swords, he wasn’t the Bohemian, peacenik, flowerchild hippie He’s made out to be by contemporary preachers of false theology.  No, He was quite literally commanding His disciples to go procure weapons in direct violation of the law at the time.  He was commanding disobedience to the law.

… for some evidence, see Digest 48.6.1: collecting weapons ‘beyond those customary for hunting or for a journey by land or sea’ is forbidden; 48.6.3.1 forbids a man ‘of full age’ appearing in public with a weapon (telum) (references and translation are from Mommsen 1985). See also Mommsen 1899: 564 n. 2; 657-58 n. 1; and Linderski 2007: 102-103 (though he cites only Mommsen). Other laws from the same context of the Digest sometimes cited in this regard are not as worthwhile for my purposes because they seem to be forbidding the possession of weapons with criminal intent. But for the outright forbidding of being armed while in public in Rome, see Cicero’s letter to his brother relating an incident in Rome in which a man, who is apparently falsely accused of plotting an assassination, is nonetheless arrested merely for having confessed to having been armed with a dagger while in the city: To Atticus, Letter 44 (II.24). See also Cicero, Philippics 5.6 (§17). Finally we may cite a letter that Synesius of Cyrene wrote to his brother, probably sometime around the year 400 ce. The brother had apparently questioned the legality of Synesius having his household produce weapons to defend themselves against marauding bands. Synesius points out that there are no Roman legions anywhere near for protection, but he seems reluctantly to admit that he is engaged in an illegal act (Letter 107; for English trans., see Fitzgerald 1926).

It was against the law for His disciples to own and bear a sword, especially in a populated area like that, and no amount of Scripture twisting can change that.  Jesus commanded them to be lawbreakers by going about armed.

Next, the preacher should be asked if he would allow his wife to be raped and his children to be murdered by home invaders, or if he would attempt to stop it.  The police can’t get there in time, and besides, you can’t use a phone when you’re tied up awaiting torture.  So the scenario we may pose is this: four home invaders have just busted into his home intent on raping his wife and dousing him with gasoline before setting him on fire.  He needs a semiautomatic weapon to handle the four invaders.  What does he do, and if he doesn’t make plans ahead of time to defend home and hearth, is he any better than a child molester or wife beater?

We’ve asked these questions before, Mr. Pence.  No gun controller or pacifist Christian has ever responded.  May we hear yours?  Oh, and by the way, what do you think causes all of that violence?  Where does it come from?  To answer this question, turn to the first few chapters of Genesis like your seminary professors told you to do.  Do you really believe that more controls will make the federal headship of Adam go away?

Did God Give Man The “Right To Bear Arms?”

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

A.A.J. DeVille.

If God had granted such a right, one would expect it to show up in, say, Scripture or in the broader Christian tradition. But in fact the entire language of rights is a modern novelty. None of the biblical writers knew such rights, nor the Fathers of the Church, nor the late medieval and early modern philosophers and theologians. Knowing this history, the great Catholic moral philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre wrote, “there are no such rights, and belief in them is one with belief in witches and in unicorns.”

In the modern period, for theological rather than historical reasons, the Church was initially reluctant to embrace the language of rights because it was thought to marginalize God. After the Second World War, however, Catholics played a significant role in drafting the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Since then Catholics have embraced the language of rights even more fulsomely. But a review of magisterial statements since 1948 reveals no such thing as a right to bear arms, God-given or otherwise.

In his 1963 encyclical Pacem in Terris, Pope John XXIII denounces the abundance of arms: “We are deeply distressed to see the enormous stocks of armaments that have been, and continue to be, manufactured in the economically more developed countries.” What would the saintly pontiff say today of a country that, according to the Congressional Research Service, has more than 300 million firearms — more, per capita, than any other nation? 

The Second Vatican Council’s decree Gaudium et Spes discusses human rights extensively, but makes no mention of gun ownership as a right. Likewise, Pope Paul VI spoke in defence of human rights before the UN in 1965 but neither there nor elsewhere did he ever once mention a so-called right to bear arms. In fact, in New York he said that “a person cannot love with offensive weapons in his hands.”

Similarly, when Pope John Paul II addressed the UN in 1979, he made nearly 60 references to human rights, but never once mentioned a so-called right to bear arms. In 1991 in Centesimus Annus he makes dozens of references to human rights, but his encyclical lacks even a hint of a right to bear arms. It is the same in the 2004 Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church.

Likewise, the writings of Popes Benedict XVI or Francis contain nothing close to a right to bear arms. In fact, Pope Francis has been vocal in denouncing  guns and weapons manufacturing. 

Why, then, do some Americans claim such God-given rights?

One commenter replies that ” I find it interesting that Deville is taking a sola scriptura approach to guns. That’s a Protestant view of things.”

He really doesn’t, he leans toward the multiple leaky buckets approach to logic, and he’s so unfamiliar with the Holy Writ that he doesn’t interact with even the most basic passages.  Furthermore, as a Protestant I can honestly say that I couldn’t care less what any pope has to say about anything.

Calvin was clear on the “right” to restrain the willfulness of kings (Institutes, 4.20.31).  We’ve already addressed the continental and English Calvinist underpinnings of the American war of independence.  We’ve also seen that believers have an unmitigated right to self defense and defense of home and hearth.  But also take note that I’ve been careful to couch this more in terms of commands, or God’s Holy ordinances, rather than rights.

Rights do have a rather Hobbesian or Lockean ring, as opposed to fallen mankind, redeemed by the blood of His only Son, expected by the Father to engage in creative and redemptive work in mimic of our Holy Father.  So in that vein, I have said this before.

God has laid the expectations at the feet of heads of families that they protect, provide for and defend their families and protect and defend their countries.  Little ones cannot do so, and rely solely on those who bore them.  God no more loves the willing neglect of their safety than He loves child abuse.  He no more appreciates the willingness to ignore the sanctity of our own lives than He approves of the abuse of our own bodies and souls.  God hasn’t called us to save the society by sacrificing our children or ourselves to robbers, home invaders, rapists or murderers. Self defense – and defense of the little ones – goes well beyond a right.  It is a duty based on the idea that man is made in God’s image.  It is His expectation that we do the utmost to preserve and defend ourselves when in danger, for it is He who is sovereign and who gives life, and He doesn’t expect us to be dismissive or cavalier about its loss.

If you believe that it is your Christian duty to allow your children to be harmed by evil-doers (and you actually allow it to happen) because you think Christ was a pacifist, you are no better than a child abuser or pedophile.

God demands violence as a response to threats on our person because of the fact that man is created in God’s image and life is to be preserved.  It is our solemn duty.

I am afraid there have been too many centuries of bad teaching endured by the church, but it makes sense to keep trying.  As I’ve explained before, the simplest and most compelling case for self defense lies in the decalogue.  Thou shall not murder means thou shall protect life.

If you’re willing to sacrifice the safety and health of your wife or children to the evils of abuse, kidnapping, sexual predation or death, God isn’t impressed with your fake morality.  Capable of stopping it and choosing not to, you’re no better than a child molester, and I wouldn’t allow you even to be around my grandchildren.

Indeed, all gun control is wicked.  The Bible does contain a few direct references to weapons control. There were many times throughout Israel’s history that it rebelled against God (in fact, it happened all the time). To mock His people back into submission to His Law, the Lord would often use wicked neighbors to punish Israel’s rebellion. Most notable were the Philistines and the Babylonians. 1 Samuel 13:19-22 relates the story: “Not a blacksmith could be found in the whole land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, “Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears!” So all Israel went down to the Philistines to have their plowshares, mattocks, axes, and sickles sharpened…So on the day of battle not a soldier with Saul and Jonathan had a sword or spear in this hand; only Saul and his son Jonathan had them.” Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon also removed all of the craftsmen from Israel during the Babylonian captivity (2 Kings 24:14). Both of these administrations were considered exceedingly wicked including their acts of weapons control.

John Calvin’s comments on this subject.  We do not need to prove that when a good thing is commanded, the evil thing that conflicts with it is forbidden.  There is no one who doesn’t concede this.  That the opposite duties are enjoined when evil things are forbidden will also be willingly admitted in common judgment.  Indeed, it is commonplace that when virtues are commended, their opposing vices are condemned.  But we demand something more than what these phrases commonly signify.  For by the virtue of contrary to the vice, men usually mean abstinence from that vice.  We say that the virtue goes beyond this to contrary duties and deeds.  Therefore in this commandment, “You shall not kill,” men’s common sense will see only that we must abstain from wronging anyone or desiring to do so.  Besides this, it contains, I say, the requirement that we give our neighbor’s life all the help we can … the purpose of the commandment always discloses to us whatever it there enjoins or forbids us to do” (Institutes of the Christian Religion, Vol. 1, Book 2, Chapter viii, Part 9).

Our writer had to look no further than the Decalogue, but stopped somewhere short of there.  Perhaps he needs more time in seminary.  Or simply just to believe on Jesus Christ and see men, women and children as made in God’s image, worthy of protection.  Perhaps his problem isn’t one of education, or lack thereof.  Perhaps it’s an ethical and moral problem.

He Should Be Executed

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 3 weeks ago

Via David Codrea, this disturbing report.

Prosecutors said Weed was attending the fair Friday with his family when he was “harassed and followed by a group of teens.” The prosecutor said the teens were angry Weed would not give them a dollar bill, and that’s when they allegedly hit him in the head.

“There was some sort of dialogue that ensued after that that made it a negative situation. There was a punch that was delivered to the back of the head by the 16-year-old, at that point in time there was a number of minutes that elapsed after that at which point in time, you all saw the video, the younger 15-year-old came flying through, lands a deadly blow to the victim,” said Frederick County State’s Attorney Charlie Smith.

David is kind, saying “his own actions show he can’t be trusted outside of a cage and needs to stay in one until he can be.”

I’m not such a nice guy as David.  Put him to death.  He’s guilty of premeditated murder.  That’s the Scriptural prescription, and besides, I don’t believe in the rehabilitative power of prisons, a fact my readers know full well.  That prison is rehabilitative is a notion of modernism.

The Scriptural prescription for murder, kidnapping and rape is death.  The Scriptural prescription for theft is slavery to the offended person until the debt is paid.  There is no such thing as a biblical idea of a debt to society.

So Tell Me We’re Not Coming To The End Of The American Age

BY Herschel Smith
2 months ago

Via Wirecutter, this disturbing report.

In a Reddit post entitled ‘Question regarding abortion and breeding fetish’, one user reveals how she has “a female friend who has a really powerful fetish for breeding” and never used birth control.

“She is with a male partner currently who is just like her, into breeding and they have been practising their fetish for quite a few abortions,” the post reads.

“I know this fetish. My girlfriend and me have the same fetish. My girlfriend enjoys her pregnancies and she enjoys the abortion. Her preferred date to abort is between 20 and 24 weeks of gestation. I enjoy making her pregnant. And I enjoy the time of her pregnancy. She has no menstrual period and she is sexually very active,” he writes.

“In the last ten years in our relationship we have done seven abortions and my girlfriend is pregnant again with a little girl,” he adds.

Good Lord.

And then there is this report of Union Theological Seminary students praying to plants.

Students at Union Theological Seminary prayed to a display of plants set up in the chapel of the school, prompting the institution to issue a statement explaining the practice as many on social media mocked them.

“Today in chapel, we confessed to plants,” the nation’s oldest independent seminary declared Tuesday on Twitter. “Together, we held our grief, joy, regret, hope, guilt and sorrow in prayer; offering them to the beings who sustain us but whose gift we too often fail to honor. What do you confess to the plants in your life?”

The same article notes what Dietrich Bonhoeffer had to say about this place after his short tenure (before returning to Nazi Germany and being executed).

Bonhoeffer wrote they “are completely clueless with respect to what dogmatics is really about. They are not familiar with even the most basic questions. They become intoxicated with liberal and humanistic phrases, are amused at the fundamentalists, and yet basically are not even up to their level.”

Bonhoeffer remembered that students “openly [laughed]” at a lecture on sin and forgiveness, and accused the seminary of having “forgotten what Christian theology in its very essence stands for.” Disillusioned, he decided to return to Germany to resist the Nazi regime, where he was executed at the Flossenbürg concentration camp in 1945 for his role in the July 20 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler.

So read these reports and tell me we aren’t at the end of the American age.  Read these reports and tell me we aren’t at Romans 1:22-25.

The Stupidity Of Criminologists: Rejecting The Sinfulness Of Mankind

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

City Journal.

“Liberal criminologists primarily support theories that locate the causes of crime in social and economic deprivation.”

So in other words, they reject Q&As 21, 22 and 23 of the Westminster Larger Catechism.

21. Q: Did man continue in that estate wherein God at first created him?

A: Our first parents being left to the freedom of their own will, through the temptation of Satan, transgressed the commandment of God in eating the forbidden fruit; and thereby fell from the estate of innocency wherein they were created.

22. Q: Did all mankind fall in that first transgression?

A: The covenant being made with Adam as a public person, not for himself only, but for his posterity, all  mankind descending from him by ordinary generation, sinned in him, and fell with him in that first transgression.

23. Q: Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?

A: The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery.

Well no wonder they’re so screwed up.  And Trump too if he thinks that “mental illness” causes crime.

Ted Cruz And Alyssa Milano Trade Barbs On The Bible And Gun Rights

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

Fox News.

“Can someone cite which passage of the Bible God states it is a god-given right to own a gun?” Milano asked in a tweet, accusing the Texas politician of being “unbelievable and clearly owned by the gun lobby.”

[ … ]

Cruz responded, telling the anti-gun activist, it was an “excellent” question, “worth considering [without] the snark of Twitter,” before citing a few examples from the Bible.

Then Milano said this.

Milano responded early Monday morning, saying she’d “love to come in and meet” Cruz when she is in Washington, D.C. next week.

“We can live-stream the meeting so the American people can hear your bullsh*t 1st hand,” she said, adding she’d like to talk about 1 Peter 4:8, which says: “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” [Editorial comment: So apparently covering a multitude of sins means allowing criminals to rape, kidnap and kill your family].

I don’t know who this person is.  But I want to be part of the live stream, pretty please?  I can exegete 1 Peter 4:8 for you instead of engaging in Scripture twisting like you did.

As for proof that Jesus approved of weapons, there are many passages I could cite, but we’ll start with Luke 22:36.  As I’ve discussed elsewhere, this was an important order to His disciples.

… for some evidence, see Digest 48.6.1: collecting weapons ‘beyond those customary for hunting or for a journey by land or sea’ is forbidden; 48.6.3.1 forbids a man ‘of full age’ appearing in public with a weapon (telum) (references and translation are from Mommsen 1985). See also Mommsen 1899: 564 n. 2; 657-58 n. 1; and Linderski 2007: 102-103 (though he cites only Mommsen). Other laws from the same context of the Digest sometimes cited in this regard are not as worthwhile for my purposes because they seem to be forbidding the possession of weapons with criminal intent. But for the outright forbidding of being armed while in public in Rome, see Cicero’s letter to his brother relating an incident in Rome in which a man, who is apparently falsely accused of plotting an assassination, is nonetheless arrested merely for having confessed to having been armed with a dagger while in the city: To Atticus, Letter 44 (II.24). See also Cicero, Philippics 5.6 (§17). Finally we may cite a letter that Synesius of Cyrene wrote to his brother, probably sometime around the year 400 ce. The brother had apparently questioned the legality of Synesius having his household produce weapons to defend themselves against marauding bands. Synesius points out that there are no Roman legions anywhere near for protection, but he seems reluctantly to admit that he is engaged in an illegal act (Letter 107; for English trans., see Fitzgerald 1926).

When Jesus told his disciples to go and purchase swords, debating over how many they got, or whether they used them and for what purpose, completely misses the point.  The point is that by telling them to do so, the Lord of the universe was ordering them to purchase and bear arms in violation of the law.  “This is a fact, and no amount of spiritualizing, Scripture twisting or hermeneutical machinations can get around it.”

Not only did Jesus approve of weaponry, he demanded His people purchase, keep and bear it.  I look forward to the invitation to live stream with you, Milano.

The Roots Of Liberty In America

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 1 week ago

I don’t sit waiting on the next post by Max Velocity in order to critique it, but this came in the mail and I felt that it would be appropriate to weigh in with readers.

This is a bit of a combination post and is intended to get a few things off my chest, and challenge the narrative. I will mince no words when I tell you that the state of things in this country right now appalls me. We have just had July the 4th and as a (former) Brit I have seen my share of dumb statements that drive me nuts.

Anyway, this is what I think: I will ‘recast’ for you the American Revolution. I know you won’t like it, because you have been reared on your own historical propaganda. In simple terms, the events surrounding 1776 were a civil war between the British Crown and Aristocratic landlords in the US, who were British. The colonies were British and had been for a couple of hundred years. The beginnings of America were British.

In the 1776 civil war, there were various actors. The British Regular Army, Hessian mercenaries, the Rebels, the Colonial Loyalists, and the French Navy. When Paul Revere made his ride, what he was actually yelling was “The Regulars are coming.” Not the British, because everyone was British.

When the Regulars marched to Lexington, they were met by British Colonial Militia. Yes, yes, farmers with guns blah blah, but they were actually a militia, trained to be able to fight with the weapons of the day. However, nothing should take away from the huge achievement of the rebels. I won’t go on here about that fact that Britain was involved in a huge war with France, and that a tiny percentage of combat power was only ever able to be given up to fight in the American colonies. For the colonies, this was a life and death struggle; for Britain, it was a sideshow. Same with 1814 etc: for Americans relating this on July 4th, it is everything, for the British Empire at the time it was nothing but a side-show to achieve specific political objectives. In short, there is a lot of American Hubris over events about 200 years ago, not really tied to any general awareness of world events at the time. Much of this can be traced to American ethnocentrism safe behind the ocean walls that protect this country. Consider this: Britain was involved in a total war with the French Empire, which was not concluded until the defeat of Napoleon in 1815 at the Battle of Waterloo. By today’s standards, the relatively small taxes levied in the Colonies were to help pay for that war. It was extremely self centered for the Rebels to pick that time to conduct a revolution: and don’t forget the large number of Colonial Loyalists who stayed loyal. I have not studied it, but given the war in Europe, I am interested to know who it was that Britain sent to the Colonies as Regular troops in order to fight the rebellion. What was their standard? Were they green troops or hardened veterans who were sent for a needed rest? It’s an interesting point.

If he’s right, it wasn’t self-centered, it was smart.  But I don’t think he’s right.  In fact, I think this analysis is very poor and perhaps suffers from his own propagandistic rearing.  And no, I couldn’t care less who were the British regulars sent to prosecute war in the Americas.

We’ve dealt with this in just a bit of detail before, but I’ll recapitulate it.  General Howe was hopelessly mired in operations in the North.  The linchpin of the British strategy was General Cornwallis and his plan to take the important Southern port of Charleston, which he did after taking Savannah, and then move North through the Carolinas and eventually meet with General Howe.  Despite several conventional victories, his forces suffered many casualties and lack of logistics mainly because of the insurgency in South Carolina (combined with the death of his plan to use loyalist troops in battle against patriots).

His intention was to march Northward, with the hideously awful plan of leaving loyalists in charge of land and assets taken in battle.  This approach failed when loyalists evaporated and patriots multiplied.  Cornwallis’ plan to march Northward became a plan to flee to Wilmington carrying wounded troops and attempt resupply.  He was hauling wounded troops with a depleted force, and needed lead ball, gunpowder and virtually everything else.  His retreat to Wilmington was unapproved, but he knew that his force couldn’t sustain much longer without rest and resupply.

At the height of the campaign in Afghanistan, I predicted the failure of logistics through Chaman and the Khyber pass, and because of the U.S. failure to engage the Caucasus region, supply aircraft left and returned from Donaldson AFB 24 hours a day, 365 days per year (Mr. Bob King, Instructor, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Department of Joint, Interagency and Multinational Operations, Leavenworth, encouraged my work in this area).  Essentially, logistics were provided to U.S. forces in Afghanistan via air transport, which is no way to prosecute a war.

The American continent became the British Afghanistan times a thousand.  Continued logistics were impossible.  The expanse of the land made it too cumbersome, too difficult, too costly, and too involved.  Furthermore, the temperament of the people was not conducive to rule by the Brits.  It wouldn’t have mattered if The Brits had sent all of their armies.  The campaign would have lasted longer, but in the end the outcome would have been the same.

But the most profoundly wrong sentiment in the article I cited above isn’t the analysis of the campaign, but rather, the reasons and impetus for its advent.  Whether there were aristocrats involved or engaged isn’t the point.  Modern American community is fractured to the point of being nonexistent.  Consider.  In the expansive wilderness of the American frontier, if a man perished on the field of battle, he needed someone he could entrust with the lives of his widow and children.  To whom could you turn today?

In order to understand history, one must turn to the primary source documents.  Secondary source documents, along with the pronouncements of professors of history, can lead one astray.  For both the American war of independence and the war between the states, my professors forced me to study sermons, and in fact read some aloud in class.

The city square was little visited compared to the church pew in colonial times.  The place for philosophy, politics and theology was the pulpit, and the theologian-philosopher was the pastor.  In order to understand why the American revolution happened, you must read the sermons of the day.  Aristocrat-involvement or not, fighting men were needed, men who could entrust their families to aid from a dedicated community in the event of their death.  Without fighting men, such an adventure as the American revolution is just a figment of aristocratic imagination.

The sermons were heavily focused on the breakage of covenant by King George.  In fact, it has been said – and correctly so – that “The American revolution was a Presbyterian rebellion.”  “Calvinists and Calvinism permeated the American colonial milieu, and the king’s friends did not wish for this fact to go unnoticed.”

As I’ve explained elsewhere:

In terms of population alone, a high percentage of the pre-revolutionary colonies were of Puritan-Calvinist background.  There were about three million persons in the thirteen original colonies in 1776, and perhaps as many as two-thirds of these came from some kind of Calvinist or Puritan connection.

[ … ]

… by 1776, nine of the thirteen original colonies had an “established church” (generally congregational in New England, Anglican in New York, Virginia and South Carolina, “Protestant” in North Carolina, with religious freedom in Rhode Island, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Georgia) … While this did not necessarily mean that a majority of the inhabitants of these colonies were necessarily committed Christian believers, it does indicate the lingering influence of the Calvinist concept of a Christian-based civil polity as an example to a world in need of reform.

Every colony had its own form of Christian establishment or settlement.  Every one was a kind of Christian republic.  It was to them a monstrous idea … for an alien body, parliament, to impose an establishment on them.  The colonies were by nature and history Christian … to read the Constitution as the charter for a secular state is to misread history, and to misread it radically.  The Constitution was designed to perpetrate a Christian order.

Their experience in Presbyterian polity – with its doctrine of the headship of Christ over the church, the two-powers doctrine giving the church and state equal standing (so that the church’s power is not seen as flowing from the state), and the consequent right of the people to civil resistance in accordance with higher divine law – was a major ingredient in the development of the American approach to church-state relations and the underlying questions of law, authority, order and rights.

[ … ]

It was largely from the congregation polity of these New England puritans that there came the American concept and practice of government by covenant – that is to say: constitutional structure, limited by divine law and based on the consent of the people, with a lasting right in the people to resist tyranny.

It may be difficult for contemporary Americans to comprehend, but for colonial America, covenant was king, the roots of the revolution were largely theological, and the people were deeply religious whether the aristocrats were or not.  There was going to be revolution with or without the aristocrats.  The Brits in America and the Brits in England were far too different to co-exist under the same crown.

Before closing, there is one more odd statement in the article.

None of the above is to say that I don’t think that ultimately the events of 1776 – 1787, resulting in the founding of the original thirteen colonies of America as a separate united country, was a bad thing. It’s just important to look at it in it’s true light. My understanding is that a lot of loyalists moved to Canada – it’s pretty poor form that the US then tried to invade Canada! Consider also Washington’s put-down of the Whiskey Rebellion – how hypocritical. In fact, that makes you smell a rat at the very beginning of the formation of the country. It was about the first new American tax. Many of the rebels were war veterans who believed that they were fighting for the principles of the American Revolution; against taxation without local representation, while the new federal government maintained that the taxes were the legal expression of Congressional taxation powers.

I’ve seen this sentiment before and while tempting, I do not fully concur with it.  If the power of taxation doesn’t extend to the payment of salaries for military service, it would never extend to anything.  A conversation between a libertarian and me almost turned ugly at one point when he demanded that continued medical services for veterans was socialism.

To be sure, unearned entitlements such as SNAP and welfare is socialism, but as for what my son did in the USMC, he signed a contract with the U.S. government.  The WCF has this to say about lawful oaths and vows.

Whosoever taketh an oath ought duly to consider the weightiness of so solemn an act, and therein to avouch nothing but what he is fully persuaded is the truth. Neither may any man bind himself by oath to anything but what is good and just, and what he believeth so to be, and what he is able and resolved to perform.

The contract signed by my son, and all veterans, and by the U.S. government, is a lawful oath.  His education benefit, his medical benefits, and so on, were part of the contract.  Failure to meet the stipulations of that contract is sinful.  You can decide that you don’t like it and work through your elected representatives to change it, but you cannot revisit what has been signed.  I repeat.  It is a lawful covenant.

Equally sinful is the failure to pay for service rendered by the members of the continental army.  The Whiskey tax was legally passed with local representation in 1791.  Max’s objection that the rebels believed they were fighting against a tax that lacked “local representation” is fabulating.  The members of the House approved it.  They elected the members of the House.

To be sure, I would have chosen to do this otherwise (than a silly, nonsensical tax on Whiskey).  But of equal importance, perhaps more important, is the question why America believed it could avoid the immorality of failing its obligations to fulfill covenants and contracts.  That says as much about the times as does the Whiskey tax.

“You shall not muzzle an Ox when it is treading out the grain,” (Deut 25:4).  So says God, whether you like it or not.

The final points on due remuneration to soldiers of the continental army are mostly beside the point except that they were addressed in the original article.  Suffice it to say that I disagree with the spirit of the balance of the article.

I do concur that it is time for America to take note of what has been gained, what has been lost, and why we are where we find ourselves.  But Max, while full of complaints, suffers from what I find in this community.  Diagnosis of the problem is everywhere.  Remedies are in short supply.

I intend to offer a few remedies of my own, and these are unrelated to the article that started this.  I don’t want to leave the reader without hope and actionable ideas.

1] Resolve never to be disarmed.  That is the least your family and community should be able to expect from you.  This involves having a world and life view to support such a determination.  You have no greater God-given duty than to your family for their protection and provision.

Libertarianism isn’t that world and life view.  As R. J. Rushdoony observed:

“Modern libertarianism rests on a radical relativism: no law or standard exists apart from man himself. Some libertarian professors state in classes and in conversation that any position is valid as long as it does not claim to be the truth, and that therefore Biblical religion is the essence of evil to them. There must be, according to these libertarians, a total free market of ideas and practices.

If all men are angels, then a total free market of ideas and practices will produce only an angelic community. But if all men are sinners in need of Christ’s redemption, then a free market of ideas and practices will produce only a chaos of evil and anarchy. Both the libertarian and the Biblical positions rest on faith, the one on faith in the natural goodness of man, the other on God’s revelation concerning man’s sinful state and glorious potential in Christ. Clearly the so-called rational faith of such irrationalism as Hess and Rothbard represent has no support in the history of man nor in any formulation of reason. It is a faith, and a particularly blind faith in man, which they represent.”

Libertarianism is tyranny by substituting the government for the individual.  A tyrant by any other name is still a tyrant, and tyranny can present itself in lawless behavior in the community just as it can in taxation.  Classic libertarian politicians, like Ron and Rand Paul, care less about laws to protect the border than the democrats (who want voters) or republicans (who want cheap workers for the corporations).  Libertarianism leads to lawlessness and breaking of covenants, contracts, vows, oaths and obligations.

Your basis for never being disarmed is that you were created in God’s image, and His law is immutable and transcendental.  Anything else is shifting ground and will disappoint you.

2] Consider your community.  If you cannot entrust anyone except family for the protection of your wife and children, not only is that a sad testimony concerning the state of America, but it makes a laughingstock of plans to conduct small unit fire and maneuver tactics.  You need to look for a good church, one that values caring for widows and orphans more than it does large buildings and multi-media presentations.

3] Horace Mann laughs from the grave.  If your children or grandchildren are in the public school systems of communist reeducation, you should consider home schooling.  Incrementalism isn’t something we should reject in the patriot community.  Practically and humanly speaking, the father of modern Christian education in America, Rousas J. Rushdoony, believed so thoroughly in Christian education and home schooling that he spent much of his life on it and believed it to be the only real hope for America.

I hope this engenders discussion, thought and study.

Saving The Christians In Nigeria

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 3 weeks ago

Frank Gaffney:

Vice President Mike Pence will have today what could be a decisive meeting for tens of millions of Christians in Nigeria now facing the prospect of genocide and forced mass emigration.

Mr. Pence’s visitor is a man who should be on their side, his Nigerian counterpart Yemi Osinbajo. After all, he’s one of the very few Christians in a Nigerian government otherwise dominated by Islamist Fulani tribesmen.

Unfortunately, Mr. Osinbajo is instead part of the problem. He lies shamelessly – including this weekend in New York – about the anti-Christian persecution his government is at least tolerating and, at worst, enabling.  Osinbajo’s own tribe has sharply repudiated him for doing so.

If Vice President Pence makes clear that all the persecutors in Nigeria will be held accountable and face penalties, he may be able to prevent a catastrophe there on his and President Trump’s watch.

What penalties, Frank?  Name them.  I’m betting that you can’t name a penalty that isn’t associated with armed violence, or that (in the case of economic sanctions) isn’t associated with a country that stays in power by the threat of armed violence.

That means that any saving to be done is catalyzed by arms, large or small, you pick.  And what it means that anyone has to go to a president or vice president of the U.S. to demand this is that the Christians won’t go to war themselves to prevent being evicted from their own country.  Note well the irony – Christians won’t engage in collective self defense, but we’ll demand that the folks who are armed defend them.  With guns.  One is seen as unrighteous, the other righteous.

Christians around the world have bought into the notion of Jesus as a Bohemian, peacenik, pacifist, hippie flower child.  But no one is coming to save you.  America is bankrupt, and cannot afford another war and occupation.

Christians, arm up and prepare to do battle.  It’s the righteous thing to do.

Iraq’s Christians “Close To Extinction”

BY Herschel Smith
6 months ago

BBC:

In an impassioned address in London, the Rt Rev Bashar Warda said Iraq’s Christians now faced extinction after 1,400 years of persecution.

Since the US-led invasion toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein in 2003, he said, the Christian community had dwindled by 83%, from around 1.5 million to just 250,000.

“Christianity in Iraq,” he said, “one of the oldest Churches, if not the oldest Church in the world, is perilously close to extinction. Those of us who remain must be ready to face martyrdom.”

[ … ]

Taking a historical perspective, the Archbishop of Irbil lamented the fact that in centuries past there was a happy period of fruitful cooperation between Christians and Muslims in Iraq, a time that historians have referred to as the Islamic Golden Age.

“Our Christian ancestors shared with Muslim Arabs a deep tradition of thought and philosophy,” says Archbishop Warda. “They engaged with them in respectful dialogue from the 8th Century.

The last two paragraphs are an outright lie and he knows it.  I feel pretty bad about all of this for them, but it would help a great deal if [a] he would quit whining to the Brits about it (they aren’t going to do anything), and [b] his statement had read this way: “Those of us who remain must be ready to pick up weapons and go to war to kill our oppressors.”

So much for GWB’s naïve notion of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).  Yea, freedom only for certain religions, oppression for others.


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